Carson Chamber announces 2022 Community Awards

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At its annual meeting Wednesday, June 15, Carson City Chamber Chair Rob Joiner will be handing out seven awards to businesses, governmental entities, or individuals that make Carson City the powerful and caring community for which it is known.
“The Chamber does not present its annual awards lightly and there is much thought as to which entity most deserves an award especially since we have been unable to hold our annual meeting since 2020 thus some of this year’s awards are cumulative,” said Joiner.
Two governmental agencies were recognized this year for making Christmas 2021 special.
Carson City Public Works earned the Community Impact Award. Staff spent many hours installing the new holiday décor. The new snowflake themed lights coordinate with the Silver and Snowflakes Festival of Lights theme. Though Public Works staff mount holiday lights every year, this year was special because they extended the lighting north to Winnie Lane and south to the round-a-bout giving the city a more unified holiday look. They also installed the older lights on Curry Street in the downtown to extend the holiday welcome. Locals were delighted with the new décor.
The Government Employee of the Year was earned by Phil Nemanic who is in the forefront of creating holiday magic on the Capitol Grounds as well as coordinating the traditional Halloween and Christmas themes at the Governor’s Mansion. As an employee of State Buildings and Grounds, Nemanic spends long hours in all sorts of weather to trim the Capitol grounds with thousands of lights. This past holiday season was even more difficult because of staff shortages, but, as always, Nemanic made certain when the switch was thrown on the first Friday in December to light up the downtown, all was ready and working properly.
The Brewery Arts Center receives the Non-Profit of the Year specifically for bringing music and joy to various neighborhoods in Carson City in March 2021 when residents needed some uplifting.
The Flatbed Concert Series was a resounding success. Under the direction of Executive Director Gina Lopez and her dedicated staff, the BAC continues to bring innovative and award-winning art programs to our community.
The Small Business of the Year was earned by Coldwell Banker Select Realtor Bob Fredlund who is always there when needed to support many community programs through his generosity.
The Southwest Gas all-volunteer BLUE (Building Lives Up Everywhere) Team is recognized as the Volunteer of the Year for their continued support of the Chamber’s Leadership Institute Program. The team first helped the Class of 2019 to create a bee habitat behind the Carson Tahoe Cancer Center. They assisted the Class 2020 in rebuilding the Serenity Trail adjacent to the habitat, and this year were instrumental in helping to create a sensory garden at the Eagle Valley Children’s Home.
The Innovator of the Year award is presented to The Greenhouse Project for the continued expansion of the program that started simply in 2012 to provide fresh produce for the food insecure and to provide flower baskets for the downtown. Today, the Project operates two hoop houses filled with plants, and an outdoor teaching center at Carson High.  The board created a work-based agricultural curriculum attracting more than 200 students taught by two full-time AG teachers at Carson High and is expanding to the lower grades. Just unveiled on June 6 was their composter and additional hoop house to grow native plants.
The Big Heart Award is presented to Mark Turner, owner of Black Pine Construction, and his team that, when contacted by a member of the Leadership Class of 2022, unhesitatingly provided design, labor, and materials to completely revamp the south patio at the Eagle Valley Children’s Home. When asked why he supported this project he stated, “The work that goes on within the walls of that facility is amazing…and the needs of those who receive care there are monumental. I can’t think of a more deserving group to be the beneficiary of a Chamber class project, and it was important to me that we did whatever we could to make this a success for this year’s leadership class and the clients of EVCH.  Were it not for mere luck, any one of us could have found ourselves in need of the services at EVCH.”


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